Friday, 4 September 2009

Ponty out to reverse losing trend at Quins

Pontypridd take to the road for the first time this season, with an away trip to newly promoted Carmarthen Quins tomroow (KO 2:30pm).

Having gained a valuable bonus point win in their first league fixture, at home to Llandovery last weekend, Ponty will need to inject a strong dose of consistency into their system, as they now face four consecutive games away from home.

The trip to Carmarthen will prove to be a real test of character, as Ponty have never won, or even drawn at that venue in previous league encounters. The trips down west in 2003, 2004 and 2006 all ended in defeat for Pontypridd.

In attempting to reverse that trend against a Carmarthen outfit who recruited strongly during the summer, but who suffered a heavy defeat at Newport in their Premiership comeback, Ponty will utilise their squad strength, with eight changes made – one positional – from the line up which beat Llandovery.

Flanker Wayne O’Connor is absent on leave, and with scrum half Gavin Morris, prop Stuart Williams and hooker Rhys Williams still sidelined by knee, back and rib injuries respectively. Returning to fitness are centre Gavin Dacey and hooker Tom Hetherington. Making his senior debut for Ponty will be recent recruit, flanker Darren Waters, forming a new back row combination with Rhys Lloyd and Kristian Dacey.

In the back line, Owen Williams gets his chance on the wing, and Kristian Baller claiming the scrum half berth.

*A number of Ponty players will gain valuable match practice this coming weekend, playing on permit for neighbouring clubs in the Asda Leagues. Prop John Williams and full back Gary Williams will turn out for Aberdare, lock Ryan Savage for Mountain Ash and full back Matt Hutchings for Ystrad Rhondda.

Pontypridd: 15.Matthew Nuthall. 14.Owen Williams. 13.Gavin Dacey – cpt. 12.Dafydd Lockyer. 11.Lewis Williams. 10.Aaron Bramwell. 9.Kristian Baller.
1.Sam Hobbs. 2.Huw Dowden. 3.Ryan Harford. 4.Grant Harrington. 5.Chris Dicomidis. 6.Rhys Lloyd. 7.Darren Waters. 8.Kristian Dacey.
Subs: Rhys Downes; Dean Gunter; Adam Thomas; Tom Hetherington; Chris Martenko; Nathan Strong; Pat Palmer.


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